The "2 Million Bikers to D.C." demonstration announced in August is still underway to honor the anniversary of the September 11 terror attacks, despite the National Park Service denying the bikers a permit.
"It is not a crime to parade" through the city without a permit, said Ted Gest, a spokesman for the D.C. Attorney General's Office.
ROARING INTO DC 2mbikers pic.twitter.com/rvs0yInx1a— ❤ Fátima ❤ (@backatone000) September 11, 2013
But, Gest said, "I don't think we can speculate on what penalties the motorcycle riders might be subjected to for traffic or other offenses because we don't know what they're going to do."
Organizers had contacted the National Park Service to request temporary closure of some city roads and intersections to allow the bikers to move through the National Mall area efficiently.
Park service spokesperson Carol Johnson said that the closures would "cause a severe service disruption of traffic."
"We couldn't provide adequate park police services and park police escorts, and it would require a lot of road closures. So it was denied."
Organizers of the ride have apologized to participants and to residents of D.C. on the event's Facebook page.
"What could have been a one or two hour ride through will now likely be an all day event," the organizers said.
"The plan is to meet up outside D.C. and cross into the city sometime after 11 a.m. The exact route isn't being made public, they said, because of "security purposes."
Because roads will not be closed for the bikers, the riders will have to obey all traffic laws, including yielding to pedestrians and stopping at red lights.